Team Canada might be missing a few stars this year but theres another Team Canada in Whistler this week and they wont be hindered by a never-ending wage dispute.
DJ Grandtheft and DR One are "Team Canada," theyre also part of a collective called Groundwerk, and theyre here throughout the Telus World Ski and Snowboard Festival flexing their style, which is best described as tag-team spinning.
Both DJs are "huge hockey fans" and they wanted to make it clear that theyre not New York DJs, so the Team Canada logo came pretty easily.
Grandtheft attended the festival last year and obviously made an impression because this year Team Canada and Groundwerk are involved in a swag of shows.
Grandtheft, DR One and Groundwerk have already played Tommy Africas and the DKNY stage and this weekend theyll be performing in the Battle of Beats as well as the DMC Championships at Garfinkels. The DMC Championships are part of the DMC World DJ Championships, sponsored internationally by Technics.
Grandtheft, whos parents named him Aaron Waisglass, doesnt have a background in DMC battles but DR One, or Raphael Kerwin, was more involved with that scene when he was developing his skills.
But regardless of how they learned to put the needle to the groove, it says a lot about the pair that they would be invited to perform at the DMC Championships.
When theyre not in a crowded room full of battling DJs, Team Canada and Groundwerk are based in Montreal.
The collective plays mostly hip-hop with D-shade as the lead MC. Hayes Kali Thurton brings some Trinidadian reggae flavour to the band, while Lisa Marie Mackey is the sole female voice. Mike Baker is the young all-rounder.
But Grandtheft said his philosophy was to use any kind of music to just get everyone "bumping."
"Were carving out our niche with Team Canada and Groundwerk, which is more into doing mash ups and that means throwing down an 80s beat and putting on a hip-hop, a capella or a rock beat with a regge a capella," said Grandtheft.
"Its more about getting a style because we still want it to be technical but this is something different."